Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Kinky Agenda

Latest Newpaper Column.

Heres' the text:

Once in a great while, a politician comes along that stirs the soul. A man of vision. A compelling public presence. Someone who even I could wholeheartedly support.
No, I’m not talking about Barack Obama, although I have to admit he’s pretty cool too. I’m talking, my friends, about the man who may just be the next Governor of the Great State of Texas: Kinky Friedman.
Now, you would normally think that a country-rock singer who used to sing lead in a band called the Texas Jewboys, a guy who writes and sings songs like “They Ain’t Makin’ Jews Like Jesus Anymore,” a man fond of quotes like “I even went so far as to become a Southern Baptist for a while, until I realized that they didn't hold 'em under long enough,” wouldn’t have much of a chance in politics. But these are not normal times. And the Kinkster, as he likes to be known, may be just the politician for those times.
Oh, I know. You scoff. You think, “This has to be a joke.” That’s what I thought, too. And considering that one of his early campaign slogans was “Kinky for Governor: Hey, How Hard Could it Be?”, I can perhaps be forgiven for this misconception.
But a couple of months ago, I went down to Houston to do a book signing and got to talking with the bookstore manager. He’d hosted an event with the Kinkster shortly before my arrival. See, in addition to being a singer and humorist, Kinky Friedman’s also a mystery writer, author of such deathless tomes as “A Case of Lone Star”, “Armadillos and Old Lace” and “The Love Song of J. Edgar Hoover.” The novels feature a country-singing, cigar-smoking, cowboy-hat wearing sleuth named--Kinky Friedman. Any similarities to any actual person, living or dead, are part of the joke.
Anyway, I got to talking with David, the manager, and he mentions that he had had the Kinkster signing books and speaking in the store a few weeks before. I grinned and opined that it must have been a major hoot. David shocked me by looking serious and telling me, “you know, he really does have something to say.” I was so startled I nearly dropped my beer. And it was a Shiner Bock beer, too. Trust me, it’s too good a beer to drop lightly.
So I did a little research, and—whaddya know—the guy actually does make sense. Job Number One on the Kinky Agenda is education reform. “Teachers are Kinky’s heroes,” his website tells us, “along with soldiers, firefighters, and cowboys. Each of us remembers a teacher who made an impact on and changed our lives for the better. Kinky intends to identify these special people and seek their advice in creating a vibrant, responsive and forward-looking education system for Texas.”
Hear, hear. Considering that Dubbya appointed a Secretary of Education who called the country’s largest teacher’s lobby a “terrorist organization,” it’s nice to see someone with an education agenda that doesn’t equate teachers with Osama bin Laden.
Kinky also wants to reclaim Texas’ primacy in energy production, not by drilling more “two mile deep holes in the sand,” as he puts it, but by using Texas’ resources to develop alternative fuels, such as bio-diesel, which can be made from agricultural products. One of the great failures of both the Democratic and the Republican parties is that neither put forth a strong, bold plan to boost American’s energy independence. It’s not just an economic issue, it’s probably the primary national security issue right now. Wouldn’t it be nice it the President didn’t have to hold hands with the Saudi Crown Prince but could tell him to get his terrorist-funding house in order, because we really didn’t need his stinkin’ oil? Wouldn’t that be great?
Before you write off the Kinkster as some tree-hugging liberal, you need to know about some other planks in his platform, such as “Abolish Political Correctness” (“a man should be able to light up a cigar once in a while”) and what he calls “De-wussification” ("We will beat back the wussification of Texas if we have to do it one wuss at a time”).
It’s almost enough to make me want to move to Texas to work for the guy. Admittedly, he’s the dark horse candidate, an independent running in a heavily partisan state. But hey, they thought Jesse Ventura was a long shot too.
We’ve seen where the governorship of Texas can lead. If the Kinkster could put his hand-tooled boots up on the desk in the governor’s mansion in Austin, who knows what could be next? Is the world ready for President Kinky?
I think I am. As his current campaign slogan puts it: “Why the Hell Not?”

Dusty Rhoades lives, writes, and practices law in Carthage. He just likes writing the words “Kinky Agenda.”

2 comments:

Polly P.I. said...

How about Kinky Campaign

Or he can give away buttons and bumper stickers that say: I like Kinky

Let's do it the Kinky way.

This country needs to get Kinky

Kinky for family values.

Anonymous said...

Hey ya D,
I've read some Kinky, but he's friends with Imus and that's a mite too close to conservatism I fear.
I'm so nervous about the Houston brigade, I'm keeping as left as possible, somewhat like a rat in a maze.

~Zora!